15 Days Uganda Birding Safari

Uganda birding tour of 15 days

This 15 days Uganda birding tour goes to the most important birding areas in Uganda. Visit 6 national parks to watch forest, grassland and water birds.

The Uganda birding tour has the below highlights

  • Visit 6 parks of Murchison Falls, Semliki, Kibale Forest, Queen Elizabeth, Bwindi, and Lake Mburo in Uganda
  • Birding Nature walk and in Bigodi Swamp and Royal Mile
  • Sunrise and sunset birding drives in Murchison Falls National Park, Queen Elizabeth National Park and Lake Mburo
  • Birding boat cruises on River Nile and Kazinga channel with high populations of water birds,

  • See the local birds, endemics and migrants
  • Cross the Equator and stand in two hemispheres at the same time
  • Uganda birding tour in local communities and woodlands of 

Watch the Saddle billed Stork while on the birding safari in Uganda

Day 1: Airport EBB – Arrival at Entebbe

You are warmly received and transferred to the hotel for overnight rest

Overnight stay: Lake Victoria View Guest House (BB) or The Boma (BB)

Day 2: Entebbe to Masindi 255 km, 5hr                                                                                                

We drive northwards and watch birds along the countryside farms, swamps. The  woodlands up to the old colonial town of Masindi are good areas for birding. Several species can be seen along the way including local birds and seasonal migrants. A relaxed evening awaits. Overnight: Kabalega Resort (FB) or the Masindi Hotel (FB)

Day 3: Masindi town to Royal Mile   65 km, 1hr                            

We start early morning birding through local farms to the Royal Mile. Here, we look out for the Green Crombec, Black Bellied Firefinch and Grey Headed Olive Back. Then enter the woodlands to search for birds such as the Yellow-browed Camaroptera, Narinas Trogon and Ituri Batis. Likewise, expect the Green Sunbird, Yellow Spotted Barbets, Little Greenbul and African Emarald Cuckoo. Later, we retire to the Lodge to relax. Overnight: Kabalega Resort (FB) or the Masindi Hotel (FB)

Day 4: Birding in Budongo Forest to Murchison Falls 

We continue to Budongo. This is no doubt the biggest forest in Uganda. Moreover with some of the rare and most sought after birds. On the walk, look forward to the resident birds like the Chocolate-backed Kingfisher, Grey Parrots and Rufous-sided Broadbill. Apart from these, the Nahan’s Francolin, African Crowned Eagle and Ross’s Turaco live here. You are likely to see animals of the forest including chimpanzees. Have lunch at Budongo Eco-Lodge. We continue through the forest to the top of the Murchison Falls. The thunderous falls here clearly squeeze through a narrow rocky gap. We check in at the lodge with views of the wilderness. On the other hand, animals are on the river banks below. This is ofcourse the largest park and birding destination in Uganda with a wide variety of birds. Overnight: Murchison River Lodge (FB) or the Paraa safari Lodge (FB)

Day 5: Murchison Falls National Park  

We undertake a morning birding drive in the savannah park. There are plenty of birds to see along the Albert Nile and Victoria tracks. In the skies you see the African hawk Eagle and Martial Eagle, while in the grasslands, the Flappet Lark, White browed scrub Robin and Croaking Cisticola move about. In the afternoon, we embark on the cruise along the river Nile. The boat sails steadily to the bottom of the falls. The cruise trip nonetheless provides an opportunity to see the water birds like the Shoebill, Woolly- necked stork,  and long-toed plover. Besides the birds, other wildlife is visible in the water and along the shores. Overnight: Murchison River Lodge (FB) or the Paraa safari Lodge (FB)                                                                   

Day 6: Murchison Falls NP to Fort Portal about 8 hr

Today, we drive southwards through the wooded and cultivated countryside. The drive too takes us birding all the way to Fort Portal. This town lies at the bottom of the Rwenzori Mountains. Along the way, you will have lunch in the colonial administrative town of Hoima. Overnight: Fort Motel (FB) / Mountains of the Moon hotel (FB)

Day 7: Fort Portal to Semliki National Park   80km 2hr                                                                       

Have a hearty breakfast and proceed through the Rwenzori Mountains to Semliki. We explore the Semliki jungle and notably visit the steamy Hot springs. The forest birds in Semliki are no doubt an extension of the Congo basin. This makes it chiefly the best birding area in Uganda to see some of the West African species. In fact, it is ranked number two in Uganda’s birding sites by the African Bird Club Members. Expect many forest species such as the Black-throated Coucal, Blue-billed Malimbe, Congo Serpent Eagle and Black Dwarf Hornbill. Others namely the Grey-throated Rail, White-bellied Kingfisher and Yellow-throated Cuckoo can be seen. Then we transfer to Kibale Forest, birding en route. Finally, relax by the evening campfire.  Even so, sounds of the nocturnal birds and animals of the forest fill the air. Overnight: Kibale Forest Camp (FB) / Primate Lodge (FB)

Day 8: Kibale Forest National Park

We go bird watching on a nature walk in the park. Again, expect to see various rare and colorful birds that include the African Pitta, Narina Trogon, Green-backed Twinspot and White-winged Warbler. In addition, look forward to the Grey Apalis, White-chinned Prinia and White-napped Pigeon. However, it is possible to go for Chimpanzee tracking or habituation experience (optional). And do birding the whole day in the forest .

In the afternoon, we make another nature walk in the nearby Bigodi Swamp. Along the trails, we search for the papyrus endemics such as the Papyrus Gonolek and White-collared Oliveback. Other species to see are the African Marsh Harrier, the great Blue Turaco, Grey Parrot and Red-headed Malimbe.

Overnight: Kibale Forest Camp (FB) / Primate Lodge (FB)

Day 9: Kibale Forest to Queen Elizabeth 160 km, 4 hours

Transfer to Queen Elizabeth National Park through the crater lakes area with splendid views of the Mountains of the Moon. Furthermore, we make a stop at the Equator. Later, we go for the afternoon birding  drive as the sun sets. On this excursion, we are likely to see the Black Bee-eater, Blue Quails and Caruther’s Cisticola. Queen Elizabeth unmistakably ranks as the best park for a birding safari in Uganda with over 600 species recorded. Overnight: The Kasenyi Safari Camp (FB) or the Mweya Safari Lodge (FB)

Day 10: Explore Queen Elizabeth National Park

The day starts with the birding drive across the Kasenyi plains. This area is specifically famous for predators such as lions, hyenas and leopards.  The antelopes and warthogs are particularly the prey. Return to the lodge for lunch. We then slope down for the boat cruise along the beautiful Kazinga channel. The boat sails close to numerous birds that come to feed or drink from the channel. Species that can be seen on the banks include the African Skimmer, African Spoonbill and Gray-headed Gull. Others for example the  Pelicans, green backed Heron and three-banded Plover are residents. There are big animals at the channel like the Hippos, buffaloes, elephants and crocodiles. Lastly, the cruise ends down by Lake Edward with stunning views of the mountains in Congo. Overnight:The Kasenyi Safari Camp (FB) or the Mweya Safari Lodge (FB)

Day 11: Queen Elizabeth N. Park to Ishasha

Have a morning birding drive as we transfer south to the Ishasha sector. Check in at the Lodge for lunch and relax. We enjoy a relaxed sunset drive as we bird and search for the tree climbing lions. The drive nonetheless goes up to the river camp. Birds that we may see on this drive include the Greater Honey-guide, Green winged Pytilia, Scaly throated Honey-guide, Flappet Lark and many others. Overnight: Ishasha Jungle Lodge (FB) or the Ishasha Wilderness Camp (FB)

Day 12: Ishasha to Bwindi national Park (60km 2hrs / 150km 5hrs)

After a sumptuous early breakfast, we drive to Bwindi Impenetrable. On our way we bird through wooded and hilly villages and beautiful landscapes. Bwindi Impenetrable is a unique montane forest with many birds species. Indeed it is a UNESCO heritage site and one of the Important Bird Areas of Uganda. This forest is also one of only 2 places in the world where you find the endangered Mountain Gorillas!! Overnight stay: Gorilla Mist Camp (FB) or the Mahogany Springs Lodge (FB)

Day 13: Bwindi Impenetrable forest on the trails Birding!!!

Early morning, we set off to the forest for birding. Species to see along the trails include the African Broadbill, Banded Prinia, Red-throated Alethe and Rwenzori Batis. The informed guides no doubt explain the birdlife of the forest. In the afternoon, we go birding along the forest edges. Alternatively, it is possible to do gorilla tracking and have an hour with them (optional). Overnight stay: Gorilla Mist Camp (FB) or the Mahogany Springs Lodge (FB)

Day 14: Bwindi Impenetrable Forest to Lake Mburo National Park 190km 5hr                 

After breakfast, we drive leisurely birding with stops along the mountainous woodlands and cattle countryside, to Lake Mburo. There are notably five lakes in the park making it an excellent water birding area. Although it is mostly woodland, the park harbors beautiful bird species such as the Tabora Cisticola, Egyptian Goose, Green-backed Woodpecker and Coqui Francolin and Grey-crowned Crane. In the afternoon, we go for a drive along the tracks while we explore the birds of Lake Mburo. Then, return to the Lodge to relax. Overnight: Rwakobo Rock (FB) or the Mihingo Lodge (FB)

Day 15: Lake Mburo to Kampala or Entebbe

After a full breakfast, have a birding safari walk in the park to search for more birds. It is absolutely thrilling to go birding on foot in an African park. Finally, we  transfer to Entebbe for your departure flight. But this is after a lunch break at the Equator. END.

*Optional activities while on the Uganda birding tour

       – Chimpanzee tracking: USD 200 per person 

       – Habituation: USD 250 per person (Chimpanzees)

       -Gorilla tracking: USD 700 per person

TOTAL PRICE (Medium range accommodations- Full board)

  • 2 persons: USD 3235 per person (double/twin sharing) based on a private tour
  • 4 persons: USD 2655 per person (double/twin sharing) based on a private tour
  • 6 persons: USD 2435 per person (double/twin sharing) based on a private tour
  • USD: 665 single room supplement outside the double/twin room

The above Price includes:

  • Ground transfers
  • 4×4 custom built safari vehicle with knowledgeable driver/guide and fuel
  • Sealed Bottled drinking water
  • Clean accommodations and meals
  • Entrance fees to the National Parks and sites

The following activities: Morning and sunset birding drives, boat trips on the river Nile and Kazinga Channel and a visit to the crater lakes.

TOTAL PRICE (High Budget accommodations- Full board)

  • 2 persons: USD 4720 per person (double/twin sharing) based on a private tour
  • 4 persons: USD 4050 per person (double/twin sharing) based on a private tour
  • 6 persons: USD 3750 per person (double/twin sharing) based on a private tour
  • USD: 755 single room supplement outside the double/twin room

The above Price does not include:

  • Activities not in the Itinerary
  • Flights and Insurances
  • Visa for Uganda
  • Meals and drinks not mentioned
  • Tips, personal expenses such as laundry and communications

N.B: This Uganda birding tour can be done at any time of the year.

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